Most, if not all, civilians who have a concealed carry permit carry folding knives. Some pack a blade just for convenience and others as a back-up to their pistol. And while plenty people who carry a knife train extensively with their carry pistol very few have ever trained with their folding knife. The truth is that most people don’t choose a folding knife looking for something that could really do some damage in a pinch, they just buy something that’s “good enough.”
I hear a lot of people with CCW permits say that carrying is a lifestyle and they actively avoid places where they can’t carry firearms. But that’s not always possible. If you carry legally then there are certain places where you are will have to disarm yourself. Places like:
- Work – most employers don’t allow employees to carry firearms
- Airline travel
- Post office, DMV, Courts and other government facilities
- Sporting events
Unfortunately, most mass shootings occur in places just like these where you’re not allowed to carry. Most concealed carry permit holders put this reality out of sight and out of mind figuring they’ll just avoid these places as much as possible. But if all you have under your belt is firearms training and you get into a hostile situation at a place that prevents you from having a firearm with you, then you are truly defenseless – a one trick pony with no backup.
Studies show that a person armed with a club or a knife can travel about seven yards in about two seconds. It takes about 1.5 seconds for a trained person to react, present a firearm and get off one or two shots. Statistically speaking, unless one is very aware of his or her situation and looking for attack cues, they are going to get stabbed by their assailant. I’m not suggesting anyone bring a knife to a gun fight; I’m just saying not to underestimate what someone with a knife is capable of. Especially if they’re actually trained to use it.
The problem is, guns won’t always help. Women between the ages of 16 and 19 have the highest rates of victimization for violent crimes, followed closely by those 20-24. In cases of rape, half the victims of rape are under the age of 18 years. A full third of all the rapes that occur happen to females between the ages of 12 and 17. The numbers say the average rape victim is a teenager. Here’s the point: by the time women are old enough to legally carry a gun, they have already passed the prime age to be abducted or sexually assaulted.
And there’s no shortage of politicians who are dedicated to banning all civilians from owning guns.
Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-California – Interview with 60 Minutes (1995)
“If I could have gotten 51 votes in the senate of the United States for an outright ban picking up everyone of them (firearms), Mr. and Mrs. America turn them all in, I would have done it.
Rep. William L. Clay, D-St. Louis
The Brady Bill is “the minimum step” that Congress should take to control handguns. “We need much stricter gun control, and eventually we should bar the ownership of handguns except in a few cases”
Think it can’t happen? Think back to post-Katrina New Orleans where no one stood up to the police who were confiscating guns. What if you found yourself in a situation where you and your family were forced to evacuate your home because of some kind of natural or man-made disaster? What if on the way to shelter, your guns were confiscated? God forbid you find yourself in a situation where you need your firearm and don’t have it because it’s been taken away from you but you can’t just assume you’ll never be in that kind of situation.
The only true, practical self defense includes incorporating knife and baton training along with your firearms, or close combat training. It’s not a cure-all, but neither is a gun. By combining other weapons into your personal defense training, you greatly increase your chances of walking away from a bad situation. A bulletproof vest, good quality folding knife, a baton along with awesome pair of combat boots can be extremely effective if you keep a low profile and your head low. And you probably won’t get them confiscated, either.
[Rick Saxby owns fightingphilosophy.com]